"The Dungeon Master" Fiction in the New YorkerPosted: January 14, 2013
“I know that he is strange and not as smart as he pretends, but at least he keeps the borders of his mind realm well patrolled. That must count for something.”
The above quote is from a Sam Lipsyte short story called ‘The Dungeon Master’ about kids who play D&D. I predict that most of the online D&D community would hate it but I liked it. Sort of like a slightly less pessimistic Flannery O’Conner writes about kids playing D&D — or something like that.
It’s less about D&D and more about being a teenager and how teenagers can be really shitty to one another yet still think of these people who they are shitty to (or who are shitty to them) as ‘friends.’ Perhaps the turning point between ‘teenagerism’ and ‘adulthood’ is when we say, “Why do I still want to hang out with X? X always acts like a douchebag! I’m going to stop spending time with him.”
I know some people are going to bitch up a storm about some detail or another that was ‘wrong’ in the story (“Can of strawberry milk? Strawberry milk doesn’t come in cans! Totally badwrong writing! The author completely destoyed my sense of immersion with that strawberry milk in cans bullshit!“). Mostly they are going to hate the story because the characters in it are misfits. I kind of think they will be missing the point of the story, but, well, whatever.
Please try to enjoy.